Prince, 22

“Gloria’s manipulating Turner.”

Franz looked at Olivia, carefully considering. Ostensibly they were having lunch to talk about weddings, and it had taken her until now to suddenly drop the point of their little meeting into the conversation. That wasn’t quite what Franz had expected. “What makes you think that?”

Olivia shook her head, sipped at her tea. “She’s got him convinced that the marriage is going to be advantageous for him. I don’t think he realizes that it’s only advantageous for her.”

“Having a royal connection is good for Turner,” Franz countered, though he thought Olivia was right. “And it’s good for your family.”

Knighthood, 24

Edwin had been enjoying an afternoon off and away from the fortress when the city’s alarm bells started ringing. Like everyone else in the street, he stopped what he was doing, looking up because that was where the bells were and it took him a second to realize that of course whatever they were ringing for was approaching the city from the ground. And if there was a threat to the city, Edwin needed to get back to the fortress.

The people on the street were all murmuring to each other, obviously worried. One of them tapped Edwin on the shoulder. “Excuse me, sir knight. What’s going on?”

Edwin didn’t know any more than this man did, which surely he had to realize given that they were both standing here on the street and the bells had just started ringing. But instead of saying any of that he just smiled. “I’m sure it’s nothing to worry about, sir. But just in case, it’s a good idea to stay inside until they stop ringing the alarm.”

Chosen One, 37

They had one day off a week at the academy, and the only bad thing about that was that it was only one day long. Still, Isaac tried to make the most of it when it came around, only wasting half of it studying and doing something fun for the other half. ‘Half’ being defined very loosely, since he got up late and only studied until lunchtime, but whatever.

Unfortunately, his leisure time was not to be today. The minute he stepped outside of the cafeteria with Peter and Skip, Isaac could hear bells ringing, and not the normal churchy kind. “That’s weird,” Isaac said, looking up. The bells were low, ominous.

“I think they’re alarm bells,” Peter muttered, frowning.

Dragon, 37

The bells started ringing just as Owen and Gavin were returning from lunch.

“What the hell?” Gavin asked, looking up at the ceiling as if it would give him answers. The bells were faint in the castle, but could still be heard.

“What is it?” Bells rang periodically in the capital, it wasn’t that strange. Owen didn’t think he’d ever heard these exact ones before, he had to admit. They were lower, more methodical, than the church bells that clanged way too early in the morning every day.

“Those are the alarm bells,” Gavin said, expression tightening. He turned and headed down a hallway at speed, and Owen followed him.

“Alarm bells. Something’s approaching the city?” Owen suddenly felt like he needed his armour and sword.

Gavin nodded. “The last time I heard them…well it was when I got kidnapped.”